LeRouxIsPHat wrote: Oldschool wrote: ↑June 9th, 2021, 11:37 am
Dave Cahill wrote: ↑June 9th, 2021, 11:16 am
The Pro14 and Rainbow Cup this season have been a farrago. Games called off and not refixed, competition structure constantly changing, teams and players looking uninterested, players being pulled to protect the 6 Nations/Lions/Champions Cup, no fans. A complete shambles.
A completely necessary shambles though. If we have professional rugby in Ireland next season it is because of this shambles. The IRFU are considered (and often envied) for their fiscal rectitude. They have managed a minority sport in a country with a small population and significant competition, both native and on our neighbouring Island, in a way that has turned a profit and kept the stars of that sport in Ireland. Irelands 6N games inhabit the upper reaches of the the top 10 TV ratings every year, Leinster can pretty much fill the national stadium a couple of times a year, the game is expanding at grassroots level (two new clubs affiliated to the Munster Branch this week) - yes, the AIL has become the squeezed middle, but that can be fixed. And they are skint. The IRFU have furloughed, laid off, short timed staff. They have drawn down government assistance, CVC money. And it's all gone. The only thing keeping Professional rugby in Ireland alive is the shambles that is Pro14 and the Rainbow Cup. Without the South Africans and their Supersport rand, next season we'd be the ovoid FAI.
There are positives though. Firstly we have what the Top14 and the Premiership would kill for, what the Heineken and Champions Cup would die for. We have a cross hemisphere competition. The champions of the northern hemisphere competition will take on the champions of the southern hemisphere competition in a Grand Final. Never mind the quality, never mind Trevisio, feel the ad-buys and count the cash. And the future. This may be a bit kak right now, but next year and in following years, when a bit of normality has returned and we're playing the Bulls in the RDS while Munster take on the Sharks this year will be forgotten. But this year is what will make those years possible
Great Post TBF
The Pro14 has speculated to accumulate and are a step ahead of the posse, In a time of pandemic they've been preparing for the endemic.
Is there anything in the small print that the UK/French clubs could use to block the SA participation in the HCC?
Or might they see SA participation as a step towards an elitist Super League with promotion and relegation thrown in for competitiveness reasons.
As an aside -who came up with the idea of SA involvement in the Pro14, give that man/men a raise.
We could still have joined up with SA for the league without the Rainbow cup. The latter wasn’t needed for the former.
Well you need to expand on that because as I see it, the only 2 choices were
1) draw a line under the competition that had happened before the sa teams could join, and then start a new thing in these last few weeks.
2) hand back the money and try again next year
SA obviously wanted some sort of warm up games for the lions tour, that was their priority. So I entirely back the decision to do what ever we could to help out our new best friends. Even if it meant further compromising an already compromised season.
People in rugby have long memories. We are still making documentaries about the English team that came to play the 5 nations during the troubles. Imagine there is a vote on something to do with the new euro Cup including the sa teams. The English and the French want one thing, and the we want the other. Maybe the SA teams will remember us doing our best to help them out.
I didnt agree with every decision made along the way and definitely in hindsight a lot looks pretty bad. But overall I think it was a reasonable attempt and hopefully we can all move onwards and upwards from here.
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